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Paton's birder haven to be sold - Tucson Audubon Society will manage

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Old Friday 13th December 2013, 16:30   #1
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Paton's birder haven to be sold - Tucson Audubon Society will manage

This property is located in southern, AZ and is a world famous birder spot. It looks like the Tucson Audubon Society and the American Bird Conservancy were successful in purchasing this gem. It's very sad that the property had to change hands but I guess time marches on . . . .

See the full article in the Arizona Daily Star:

A residence in Patagonia — where bird-watchers have come for decades to spot species such as the sought-after violet-crowned hummingbird in the backyard — will be sold by the owners and managed by the Tucson Audubon Society.

The site, known as Paton’s Birder Haven, was owned by the late Wally and Marion Paton, who moved to Patagonia from New England in 1972.

The couple planted vegetation to attract birds, set out feeders, and soon were attracting an amazing array of rare and colorful winged wildlife.

When bird-watchers from around the nation, Europe and elsewhere began lining the fence along the property to get a glimpse of special birds, the Patons opened their yard to the public. No fees were charged, but the couple posted a tin can on their gate to collect donations for feeding birds.

After Wally passed away in 2001 and Marion in 2009, their adult children sought to “preserve and protect the property not only for the birds, but for future generations of bird-watchers,” said their daughter, Bonnie Paton Moon of Connecticut.

The Tucson Audubon Society, working closely with the American Bird Conservancy and the Victor Emanuel Nature Tours company, launched a fundraising campaign and succeeded in bringing in the $300,000 needed for purchase of the property, said Paul Green, executive director of the society.

Green said the Audubon Society plans to keep the site essentially as it is while making needed repairs and enhancing conditions for birds and visitors.

“We need to raise about $75,000 for renovations to the house” including wiring, plumbing and roofing, he said.

Plans also call for planting more native vegetation to attract birds, providing more comfortable seating under a ramada and adding parking spaces and toilet facilities.

Green said it’s not yet certain whether the society will continue with the donation system used by the Patons or begin charging entry fees.

“One of our goals is to make sure it runs and about breaks even,” he said. “We don’t expect to make money on the site, but we don’t want to lose money.”

Last edited by PumaMan : Friday 13th December 2013 at 22:36.
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